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Apple Sends Out Event Invites– Are New Macs and The iPad Mini Coming Next Week?

ipad mini invite

Over the last few weeks there has been a lot of talk that Apple had one more big event up its sleeves for 2012. Well, yesterday Apple confirmed all those rumors, sending out invites to an event next week, Tuesday, October 23rd.

ipad mini mockup 2

One of the many “mock ups” of what the iPad Mini will look like (pic via Apple Insider)

So what can we expect? Well, according to the latest rumors Apple will be taking the wraps off a new, smaller and hopefully cheaper “iPad Mini.” As we wrote before, the iPad Mini is said to have a 7.85 inch screen (down from 9.7 inches on the regular iPad), a thin design with an aluminum back similar to the iPhone 5, the new Lightning port in place of the older iPod dock connector, as well as other standard iPad features like cameras on the front and back for FaceTime, iOS 6, and the availability to buy it in either WiFi only or WiFi+4G LTE versions. Specs wise its said to be similar to the iPad 2, with an A5 dual-core processor with 512 MB of RAM.

Now while this isn’t as powerful as the new iPad, it should still be fine for most things like browsing the web, using apps, reading books etc. And these “older” specs have their benefits as the rumors also say we can expect a cheaper price for the Mini iPad– the base 8 GB WiFi-only version possibly now starting at $249 or $299 and going up to $650 for the 64 GB WiFi+4G version (with options for 16 and 32 GB versions as well). If you want a cheap iPad for internet, apps and books– and don’t plan on storing lots of movies, pictures or music– this may be perfect for you.

There are also strong rumors that Apple is planning to finally introduce that long-awaited 13 inch version of the MacBook Pro with Retina Display, as well as reveal some new designs to the iMac and Mac Mini lines.

As always we’ll have it all covered for you back here. So make sure to check back on Tuesday for everything you’re gonna need to know about whatever Apple announces.

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Apple Launches the Magic Trackpad– Bringing MacBook Gestures to iMacs and Mac Minis Everywhere

This was rumored for a while (since the time of the iPad announcement in the beginning of the year), and as part of a sweep of updates Apple did today– including speed updates to the iMac and Mac Pro, an updated Apple Cinema Display, and a new AA battery charger (yes, Apple appears now to be looking to get into the AA battery business….)– they released this promising little gem.

Basically, it’s that same glass trackpad found on the recent MacBooks and MacBook Pros, just now as a Bluetooth add-on for $69 for those who have desktops (or MacBooks with Snow Leopard and made before the multi-touch update). It really is everything you’d expect from an Apple trackpad– multi-touch gestures (like pinch-to-zoom, three finger swipe etc. things the recently updated Magic Mouse can’t do), the buttons for clicking being in the mouse itself, and a sleek aluminum design that matches nicely with the Apple wireless keyboard, as seen in the pic above. And yes, it can work with PCs as well, though for now we’re not sure how well it works and if all the gestures and features carry over smoothly (Apple has released an update for Macs running Windows which should make everything work fine there and possibly on all other Intel-running Windows PC’s as well).

If though you got an iMac or Mac Mini with Snow Leopard (and yes, you need Snow Leopard) and have always wanted MacBook like trackpad controls, this may be the mouse for you.

The Magic Trackpad is available now for $69 from Apple’s online store.

Pic and info from Apple

Apple Updates the Mac Mini with a Major Redesign

Looking for a new computer, but not necessarily sure you want a laptop? Want a Mac but don’t want to pay $1000 for one? If your interested in either of those two questions then your gonna wanna check this out– Apple’s latest updates to their Mac Mini line, and boy do they look nice.

As you can see in the pic above, Apple is finally bringing the aluminum design found on the iPad, iMac and MacBook Pro lines to the Mac Mini– and it looks like a match made in heaven. Seriously, look at the pic above. Thinner, sleeker– heck it looks like something you’d wanna put in a living room like a media center, this looks nothing like a small desktop computer at all. And maybe that was the point. Apple not only gave the new Mini a better look, but some media friendly (and frankly long awaited) features like an HDMI port (for hooking up to screens like say an HDTV) and an SD card slot. Yeah, way more media friendly and it looks to me like an Apple TV on some crazy awesome steroids.

The new Mini also got some nice spec updates like the ones the MacBook received recently, with the base $699.99 model offering a 2.4 GHZ Intel Core 2 Duo processor (able to be bumped up to 2.66 GHZ), 2 GB of RAM (customizable to 8 GB), 320 GB hard drive (can be customized to 500 GB), and much improved graphics thanks to the NVIDIA 320M graphics card. Oh, and unlike older Mac Minis, Apple somehow was able to get the power supply built into the casing, something that not only adds to the sleekness but also makes it even more energy efficient (which is remarkable considering that they made it so much smaller). In other words– there is no longer a giant power brick needed (another seemingly underrated but still huge improvement).

The new Mac Minis are available now from Apple’s site starting at $699.

Review: Apple Mac Mini ’09 Update

mac mini

Last week Apple decided to finally release some long awaited updates to its Mac desktops: the Mac Mini, the iMac, and the Mac Pro.

These updates were more for the specs of the systems than anything else; bigger hard drives, more memory (aka RAM- something you need to make your computer run fast, the more the better both on Windows and Mac), and, in cases like the Mac Mini, an additional USB port.

Today, we got our hands on the Mac Mini (special thanks to my younger bro Josh, who just so happened to need a new computer now after his old one died) and we decided to put it through its paces and see if it is worth the money. In short, this thing is awesome and great even for someone who never owned a Mac before, and only briefly used one (like me).

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